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B2B Brands Score With Online Marketing

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Only one-half ( 50%) of B2B marketers formally measure the return of their online marketing investments, but those that do say online is more effective than traditional marketing channels, according to a report by AMR International.

Budget size is closely correlated to the amount of measurement conducted by B2B companies. For example, only 24% of B2B marketers with annual budgets lower than $25,000 formally analyze metrics, compared with 85% with budgets larger than $2 million.

Below, other findings from AMR's report titled B2B Online Marketing in the US: Assessment and Forecast to 2013.


Looking for great digital marketing data? MarketingProfs reviewed hundreds of research sources to create our most recent Digital Marketing Factbook (May 2010), a 296-page compilation of data and 254 charts, covering email marketing, social media, search engine marketing, e-commerce, and mobile marketing. Also check out The State of Social Media Marketing, a 240-page original research report from MarketingProfs.



Among B2B marketers who formally measure ROI, 64% say online has given them a better view of return on investment (ROI). Only 32% who don't formally measure ROI say the same.

B2B Marketers' Strategic Mindset

B2B marketing is driven by three major strategic goals, according to the study: brand awareness, lead generation, and customer retention. On average, marketers spend 38% of their total budgets on brand awareness, 34% on lead generation, and 28% on customer retention. By contrast, 28% of online budgets are dedicated to awareness with the difference allocated between lead generation and customer retention.

When measuring the channels that support those three strategic goals, B2B marketers who measure ROI are more likely to say their efforts are effective. For example, 49% of marketers who formally track lead generation ROI rate the effectiveness of their lead generation channel as good, compared with 35% of marketers who don't formally track lead generation ROI.

But measuring financial ROI is often more difficult for channels farther away from the point of sale. For example, B2B marketers who measure the ROI of brand awareness find that channel just slightly more effective than those who don't measure it, 50% and 48%, respectively.

Other key B2B forecast-related findings issued by AMR:

  • US online B2B ad spending is forecast to grow at a compound annual rate (CAGR) of 12% from 2009 to 2013, reaching 14% growth in 2012 and 2013.
  • Online B2B growth will be driven by recovering marketing budgets and structural shifts in budget allocations. Following the 2009 declines, online budgets are expected to recover at a 4% CAGR through 2013.
  • B2B ad spending on social media and lead generation is forecast to increase by double digits through 2013, at annualized rates of 21% and 17%, respectively.
  • Magazines will lose market share and decline at a 5% CAGR through the period.
  • Online is expected to account for 12% of the B2B marketing mix by 2013.
  • Two-thirds of B2B marketers say online must be complemented by traditional marketing activities.

About the data: Findings are based on in-depth interviews with marketers and media owners, and the analysis of proprietary survey data from over 1,000 B2B marketers in the second quarter of 2010, conducted by strategy consulting firm AMR International.


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  • by Geo. Jensen Sat Jan 15, 2011 via web

    Note to Author: In this article, you may want to check the link that goes to: "The State of Social Media Marketing". I think it's intended link should go here: http://www.marketingprofs.com/store/product/34/the-state-of-social-media-ma....

    It currently redirects to the factbook page which is referenced just above it.
    Please delete my comment if I'm wrong.

  • by Wayne Morris, myDIALS Mon Jan 17, 2011 via web

    Great article and very comprehensive. I think one reason that many B2B marketers don't measure ROI is the effort it takes to get started. You can takes intermediate steps by looking at online marketing campaigns and tracking not just activities but outcomes - number of goal completions. We released a fully automated solution with a free trial today to help this. http://bit.ly/gxEyTr From there you can add CRM and ERP data to show incremental sales and true ROI.

  • by Vahe Habeshian, MarketingProfs Mon Jan 17, 2011 via web

    Hi, Geo. Yes, you were right about the link. It's been corrected. Thanks for pointing it out.

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